What is the Digital Millennium Copyright Act?

The Digital Copyright Act is a federal law against Internet piracy of digital media. It is divided into five titles, two of which I’ll go over:

Title 1: WIPO Copyright and Performances and Phonograms Treaties Implementation Act

This title is divided into two sections the first portion, Section 102, modifies US Copyright laws to includes works produced in other countries. The second part of the title, Section 103, restricts the sell, creation, or distribution of technology that gets around (circumvents) copyright digital rights management systems (copyright protection) (Spinello, 2004).

I think this is most important part of DMCA as it clearly targets the individuals responsible for breaking the copyright laws in the first place.  However, it target those who create and distribute, not those that receive.

Title II: Online Copyright Infringement Liability Limitation Act

This title outlines certain legal duties that Internet Service Providers must comply in order to limit their legal liabilities in the event a user of their service violates copyright laws. In a nut shell, ISPs must block access to or remove allegedly infringing material after being notified by the copyright holder (Spinello).

This is section is important as it tries puts the responsibility of copyright enforcement to the copyright holders and to Internet Service Providers. However, this creates more work for both sides making it difficult to truly enforce. 


Spinello, R. A. (2004). The DMCA, copyright law, and the right to link. Journal of Information Ethics, , 8-23,100. Retrieved from https://search.proquest.com/docview/1683571705?accountid=41759

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top